Back on Track

by Dan

Hello everyone. I am very conscious that it has been two months since I past posted, and thought it was about time I provided an update.

As previously described, after Day 100 of the Daily Acts of Simplification, I decided to cease forcing myself to write about a daily act as this was becoming a little burdensome. I was confident that new habits had been formed, and the simplification process would continue without too much deliberate effort. I also wanted to spend some time tackling some larger things, stuff that needed to be made more simple that couldn’t be ticked off in one day. I also reflected on my piece on Values, and decided that it had been a while since I reviewed my own values/roles/goals, and took my own advice and had a good review.

The only part of that which didn’t work out as planned was the new simplifying habit. In addition to not writing about daily simplifications, I deleted the recurring daily task on my to-do list which prompted me to simplify something, deeming it unnecessary. However, whilst I was finding that whilst I was still looking at the world through simplifying eyes, I wasn’t actually taking action as often as I would have liked. In fact I’m quite embarrassed by how little I did! It seems that deliberately planning in your important tasks each day is the only way to get them done, no matter how automatic you believe them to be.

So as a result of all that, the daily recurring task marked “Perform Daily Act of Simplification” is back in, and I am using my own How to Simplify Your Life findings to resume momentum.

With regards to the review of my values/roles/goals, I have renewed my vows to my values (they hadn’t changed), trimmed my list of roles, and drawn up a fresh set of goals. These now inform my weekly and daily task planning to ensure I am focussed on what is important, whilst still chipping away everything else.

As an example of the rebirth of the Daily Acts, I was standing at the petrol pump the other week, filling up the tank as usual, and I found myself doing something that I have always done without thinking about it, and left myself bemused at the realisation. For some reason, at the end of the fill, I always to try to get the petrol pump to stop at a number of whole pounds e.g. £64.00. I do a series of short squeezes as the next whole pound (after the first tank-full-click) nears and try to stop it on the button. If I go too much and end up with £64.01 I’ll try to squeeze another £0.99 in so that I can finish even. Why on earth did I do this? I KNOW lots of people do it too, I can watch them all around at the pumps! Some vague idea that my accounts will look tidier with whole pounds? Pass. It wasn’t even like it was a fun game (maybe it was when I first started driving!). Anyway, that habit was cancelled with immediate effect. Fill until it’s full, then stop. Simple!